December 20, 2009 in City

Region in brief: Victim, driver in fatal crash ID’d

From Staff And Wire Reports
 

Officials identified the 56-year-old man who was hit and killed as he and his dog were crossing a busy northwest Spokane street Friday.

Stephen W. Shockley was walking his dog about 6:15 p.m., when he attempted to cross Francis Avenue between Elm and Cannon streets.

Both he and his dog got tangled under a minivan. The dog died at the scene, and Shockley died at a local hospital.

Francis was closed in both directions for three hours after the incident. It isn’t known whether the driver of the minivan, identified as 53-year-old Bonita Banicki, will be cited.

Spokane police Officer Glenn Bartlett said the death is the seventh fatal auto-pedestrian accident in Spokane this year.

Vacant home damaged by fire

A vacant home was heavily damaged by fire in southeast Spokane late Friday night.

Spokane firefighters were called to the area near Fourth Avenue and Myrtle Street on the report of smoke in the area around 11:40 p.m. Crews discovered the empty house with heavy smoke and flames showing, Spokane Fire Department official said.

Crews worked for several hours to mop up the blaze, made difficult because of multiple layers of roofing installed during various remodels to the home, officials said.

No injuries were reported. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Airway Heights crash injures child

At least one child sustained minor injuries in a two-vehicle collision near Airway Heights on Saturday.

The Washington State Patrol said Mary S. Smith, 66, of Cheney, was southbound on Craig Road about 5 p.m. in a 2003 Suzuki when she failed to stop at the intersection with Highway 902.

A 2002 Dodge Durango westbound on the highway, driven by Vickie L. Rhinehart, 53, also of Cheney, collided in the intersection with Smith’s vehicle, the WSP said.

A 9-year-old passenger in Rhinehart’s vehicle was taken to the hospital with minor injures. The other two passengers, both children, were not injured.

Three teenage passengers in Smith’s car were not injured, the WSP said. Smith was cited for failure to yield.

Police say man killed wife’s friend

IDAHO FALLS, Idaho – Investigators in southeastern Idaho say a husband whose wife had recently started a relationship with another man shot and killed him and a short time later shot and killed himself after his vehicle was forced to stop by police.

Idaho Falls Police say 49-year-old Keith Matthias shot 46-year-old Jack Purcell multiple times in a Wal-Mart parking lot about 8 p.m. Friday.

Police say Keith and Jennifer Matthias then had a brief exchange of words before Keith approached Purcell again and fired one more shot at close range.

Police say a short time later and about a mile away they forced Keith Matthias’ Mazda to a stop and that he got out with a handgun held to his side.

Police say they fired a Taser that had no effect, and that Matthias raised the gun to his head and fired. He was pronounced dead at the scene.


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